Tuition & Assistance
Your investment in Good Shepherd Episcopal School goes beyond tuition; it's an investment in a confident, compassionate, and courageous future for your child.
|Prekindergarten (Early Release)
|Prekindergarten (Full Day)
|Kindergarten, Primer, First - Eighth Grades
With Good Shepherd's acclaimed tuition guarantee program, families can secure tuition rates based on a rate table for the duration of their children's enrollment in a specific division (Early Childhood, Lower School, or Middle School) through the option of a Divisional Contract.
Several U.S. colleges and universities have adopted this innovative model to help students and families cope with rising education costs. Choosing Good Shepherd's Divisional Contract not only offers financial benefits but also reflects a commitment to the school's consistent and effective education. Two graphs below compare Good Shepherd's Divisional Contract with traditional annual contracts and with tuition costs at neighboring independent schools, assuming nominal annual tuition increases.
Recipient of the 2021 National Business Officers Association (NBOA) Jeffrey Shields Award for Innovation Excellence in School Business Operations.
- What is the difference between a Divisional Contract and the traditional Annual Contract?
- How does the Tuition Guarantee program work?
- What are the benefits of the Tuition Guarantee program, and how much money will this save me?
- How do I qualify for a Divisional Contract?
- What happens if I have a job loss during the term of the contract?
- Would my family still be eligible for tuition assistance if we choose a Divisional Contract?
- What if I choose to leave Good Shepherd and don't qualify for release for extenuating circumstances?
- Why can't Good Shepherd lock in tuition for a student's entire 10-year experience?
The traditional Annual Contract is the historical contract agreement we have had with our families. It is a one-year, binding contract with the parents and their student for a single school year.
The Divisional Contract is an optional contract agreement families are able to choose with a multi-year agreement which allows parents to enroll their student for the duration of the student's division and Good Shepherd agrees to honor the tuition rate table in place at the time of signing for the duration of the contract.
Families may choose to opt in to a Divisional Contract (and set a tuition rate table), rather than the traditional Annual Contract, which will remain in effect for the years the student is in the division. When the student is promoted into the next division, our families will have the choice to opt in to a new Divisional Contract for those upcoming years in that next division or choose a traditional Annual Contract. Tuition may be paid annually or throughout the year, in the same way our annual contracts are paid.
Early Childhood Division: Pre-K, Kindergarten, and the option of Primer (potentially a three-year term)
Lower School Division: First-Fourth grades (four-year term)
Middle School Division: Fifth-Eighth grades (four-year term)
A family will know the total tuition cost for the years their student(s) stay(s) in the division. For a student enrolled in the program from Pre-K through 8th grade, the cost savings for that family is estimated to be approximately $19,000 per student. For families with more than one student, the savings can be significant.
For a family to qualify for a Divisional Contract, they must commit to stay at Good Shepherd for their student's entire division term. If a family expects to apply out mid-division, they will need to choose a traditional Annual Contract. If a family applies out in a year they have selected a Divisional Contract, the contract will automatically convert to an Annual Contract for the entirety of the term at the higher tuition rate, and additional charges will apply.
Choosing a Divisional Contract will not impact a family's eligibility for tuition assistance. The Tuition Assistance program will continue to be an annual evaluation of a family’s represented need for the upcoming school year. As such, you will continue to apply for assistance each year, and awards will be determined, and tuition adjusted annually, based on the school year and the amount awarded.
Good Shepherd is committed to attracting and retaining deserving and talented children. We know our families view tuition as an investment in their child’s future. To facilitate this, we aim to remove any obstacles of meeting tuition requirements by providing 25% of our families some level of tuition assistance. A student’s needs, the family’s circumstances and ability to pay, and the availability of tuition assistance funds are all taken into consideration.
Statistically we understand that once a student joins our community, families want them to remain here through eighth grade. We want to do our part to make that happen. We also know how fortunate we are that 39% of our families have more than one child enrolled at Good Shepherd. While we do not give tuition reductions for the number of children a family has in private schools, we are sensitive to this being the tipping point in some families’ ability to stay at our school and encourage all of our families with multiple students to discuss their options for tuition assistance.
The Good Shepherd Business Office uses a third-party program, School and Student Services (SSS). The program helps assess a family’s ability to pay school costs, and enable us to make objective and equitable tuition assistance decisions. We follow best practice guidelines as established by the National Association of Independent Schools in the granting of tuition assistance awards.
If you are interested in applying for assistance, you must complete the required forms and submit them online to SSS. Families are required to provide the most recent-year tax return as part of the application process.
Your application is strictly confidential, but it does involve providing certain financial information and meeting several deadlines.
- When our family applies for tuition assistance, what information will schools require?
- What is SSS?
- Where do the funds come from for tuition assistance?
- Do I need to complete this again if I did it last year?
- What happens with all the information I upload to SSS?
- What do I do if I am not comfortable uploading my personal documents to the SSS site?
- What is the income level at which a family is no longer eligible for assistance?
- When and how will I find out my award?
- Are there any tips or common pitfalls in completing the application?
- Who can I ask for help in completing the PFS form?
- If my family returns its tuition assistance application late, is there any chance more funds may be available later in the year?
- How does my tuition assistance application affect the school's fundraising efforts?
Tuition assistance is based on financial need. To determine how much financial assistance you need, schools use the School and Student Services (SSS) computations to first figure out how much you can contribute. SSS needs to know such information as:
- Family size
- Income from all sources
- Savings, investments, and other assets (including home equity)
- Children's assets
- Medical, dental, and unusual expenses
This information, and much more, is collected through SSS on the Parents' Financial Statement (PFS) and shared with all the schools you want to receive it. The PFS is called a common application, or common app, because you only need to complete one application for many schools.
Most schools will require you to submit a copy of your most recently completed federal tax return to verify that the information you used on the application is true and accurate. In certain cases — for example, if you own a farm or business — you may also be asked for additional documentation.
School and Student Services (SSS) is used by more than 2,400 K-12 private schools and other organizations to help determine a family's ability to pay school costs. The service and process helps ensure all schools use the same methods and objective procedures to evaluate your tuition assistance application.
All information is treated highly confidentially. The Chief Financial Officer and Operating Officer (CFOO) and Tuition Assistance Assistant (TA) are the only individuals at the school with access to your detailed information. The CFOO reviews all information and provides a summarized report to the Tuition Assistance Committee for determining awards. This committee is composed of several school administrators. Teachers and parents are not a part of this process and are never made aware of which students receive aid.
While the SSS portal provides encryption for your documents, we recommend social security numbers are redacted from all documents before uploading. Alternatively, you may bring hard copies to the front desk or email copies to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuition assistance awards are sent at the same time as enrollment contracts. Families will receive an email from the business office detailing the award amount or a regret letter if funds were not available for your request. For returning students, this occurs when re-enrollment contracts are published. New students will receive the award or regret letter at the time of the admissions decision letter.
SSS questions frequently ask for ANNUAL amounts, not monthly amounts. Families tend to underestimate their medical and unusual expenses. In the medical expense section, please include premiums that are deducted from paychecks, as well as all out of pocket expenses. For unusual expenses, some examples include legal costs, charitable contributions, child support payments and financial support to other family members. Please make sure to be thorough in your personal letter and family budget. These documents help support your case.
Virtually all tuition assistance funds are distributed during the enrollment process from January to March. For late admitting students or families with a mid-year change in circumstances, the school wants to be as supportive as possible as allowed by budget. Please reach out to the CFOO in these cases.
Good Shepherd Episcopal School is pleased to offer scholarship opportunities for both new and current students moving into Middle School.
New, incoming Fifth Grade students are encouraged to apply for a Merit Scholarship. Two $20,000 Merit Scholarships will be awarded to two new students ($5,000 for each year the student is in Middle School). These Merit Scholarships are awarded separately from any Tuition Assistance awards.
Current Fourth Grader students of Good Shepherd (who are moving up to Middle School) may enter a drawing for Loyalty Scholarship. Middle School Loyalty Scholarships are awarded to two current students for the following school year.
Two $20,000 scholarships ($5,000 for each year the student is in Middle School) will be awarded. To qualify, the fourth grade student must not have applied to another school during the lower school years (1st - 4th) at Good Shepherd. Entries into the drawing are one entry per student for every year of attendance at Good Shepherd, beginning with Prekindergarten.
For additional questions, please contact email@example.com.